LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

In Thursday's article on the increased cigarette tax, "Going up in smoke," one person lamented: "It's the last pleasure I have in life."

Perhaps giving up that so-called pleasure would reawaken her to the joy of sunshine breaking through the clouds, a fresh spring breeze, a brisk walk, the smell of flowers, the sound of children laughing. Not smoking is a new lease on life. — Michael Steely, Medford

Local, state and federal governments are like a farmer that once had a large barn full of workhorses. The greedy, somewhat corrupt farmer abused the horses much of the time.

Compare this to U.S. manufacturing businesses. The workhorses over time ran off to better farms. Much like our manufacturing going overseas. The farmer panics when he does not have enough horses to do the farm work, so he dumps a bunch of grain into the feed bins. The farmer forgets the pigs; the pigs in the barn eat much of the food and ruin most of the rest.

The farmer doesn't know what to do. The horses are gone; the pigs can't work, but continue eating the food. The farmer borrows more grain from his neighbors. He paints the barn, knowing this is folly.

The farmer doesn't have a clue what to do; he has spent the money but has no horses. The farmer has borrowed so much grain his great-grandchildren will be in debt. Neighbors don't like how the farmer acts and will not wait that long for repayment. The farmer may lose the farm. The farmer blames everyone, but does not understand he is the one to blame. — Charles Olsen, Central Point

Graduates with no future, are you kidding me?

Juan knowingly came here illegally to join his family, who left him in Mexico for 11 years while they started anew here in Oregon. Once here, he received a quality education on the tab of the taxpayers of Jackson County. I read that he is upset that he cannot qualify for government assistance to continue his education to become, ironically, an attorney who would presumably champion the laws of this country. That's awesome.

We all have to jump over the hurdles of funding our graduate educations; this is not a problem unique to the illegal immigrant to this country. Get over it. Pay the out-of-state tuition and appreciate the education that you are buying for yourself. I did, and I do.

Regarding Amber's quote, the term illegal immigrant applies to Juan and his parents. Had they gone through the arduous process of legal immigration then a travesty you might have.

I am not bigoted, cold-hearted, intolerant or self-righteous. I am only a grandchild of legal U.S. immigrants who is disgusted with where his hard-earned tax dollar goes, and what some would have it go to. Give me a break. — Steve Blumberg, Medford

In these times of stress, worry, uncertainty, frustration and confusion, all of you who enjoy plays, here is a great one we saw going on at the Camelot Theatre in Talent. The name is "Shenandoah." It will make you smile for days after you see it. It is uplifting and heart-warming and it tops anything you'll see on TV or in a Hollywood movie. If you want to be delightfully entertained right here in Talent, go see "Shenandoah." Aw, go ahead and trust a stranger. — Camille Pagnini, Jacksonville

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